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City-Sponsored Events Canceled until Further Notice

Playhouse, Boston Court cancel events

Published on Thursday, March 12, 2020 | 7:36 pm
 

[Updated 2:00 PM] City Spokesperson Lisa Derderian further defined the “non-essential” events that have been canceled per the city’s announcement on Thursday morning.

Meanwhile, officials at the Pasadena Senior Center — an independent organization not operated by the city — are considering canceling events.

The city has pledged to assist the Senior Center in its decision making and announcement process.

Derderian told Pasadena Now on Thursday that all city-sponsored events been canceled until further notice.

Those events and activities would include recreational events and classes, educational and cultural events, census events, Community Police Academy Kids Safety Academy, Police Activities League (PAL) center activity, and community excursions.” Derderian said.

The Pasadena Playhouse and Boston Court Theater also announced they were canceling events, including the Celebrity Game Night fundraiser, scheduled for Saturday at the playhouse.

“The Playhouse is currently working to reschedule as many events as possible and will be monitoring any other orders requiring future postponements,” the Playhouse said in a statement. “We will update you more on that as we learn more information.

Danny Feldman and The Playhouse staff are very sad to share this news with you but optimistic that we will have an opportunity for you to enjoy more events at the Playhouse once life returns to normal. We will be in contact with more information as their plans solidify.”

City officials are not presently directing the cancellation of any events or activities sponsored by third parties, although the city is reaching out to the coordinators and providing current guidelines by the California Department of Public Health regarding mass gatherings, according to Derderian.

“The present situation with COVID-19 is unprecedented and the decision to cancel city-sponsored events is consistent with what appears to be emerging as the ‘best practice’ and the manner in which cities and other public and private institutions throughout the state are responding to COVID-19 public health concerns,” Derderian said. “The strategy is presently to limit the opportunity for people to come into contact with one another so as to limit the extent to which the COVID-19 virus can spread.

“This has been done in accordance with best practices we are seeing throughout the state of California.”

The city’s emergency operations center has been raised into a new state of readiness for possible activation.

The public health department’s disaster operation center has been activated at this time.

The Pasadena Police Department Spokesperson William Grisafe said the department is prepared for the crisis.

“There is no higher priority to the Pasadena Police Department than both the safety of the community that we serve and our employees,” Grisafe said. “We are in constant communication with our local health officials and are monitoring the developing COVID-19 situation closely.”

The department is also encouraging department employees to take steps to protect themselves from exposure. These steps include practicing proper and regular hand hygiene, refraining from touching their face, maintaining a safe distance from individuals when possible and utilizing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) when contacting those who are symptomatic of the flu or other respiratory illness.

“The Police Department is in possession of N95 protective masks and gloves. Additional disinfecting wipes and hand sanitizer have been purchased for the increased cleaning of any surface or equipment that potentially contain the virus. In addition, the Police Department is prepared to staff an Emergency Operations Center in the event city leaders decide such action is necessary.
Out of an abundance of caution, The Police Department has made the decision to suspend all of our community programs and events until further notice.”

All city departments are reviewing their emergency operations plans and business continuity plans to maintain city services, particularly essential services: water, electricity, sanitation.

The city will continue to work with its utility customers to make reasonable payment arrangements should they have difficulty paying for services due to work stoppages or hardships caused.

On Wednesday the city announced that one Pasadena resident is infected with the virus. Meanwhile, test results on a Caltech student came back negative.

“We have been preparing and are ready to manage COVID-19 cases in Pasadena, in close coordination with our healthcare partners,” said Dr. Ying-Ying Goh, PPHD director and health officer. “We will continue to recommend our community implement individual and community mitigation measures to reduce the risk of spread of illness.”

It is not known exactly how many events at the Rose Bowl and the Convention Center will be impacted by the cancellation.

According to the latest update 127,800 people are infected with the virus, According to the NY Times, 4,718 people have died.

On Wednesday, President Trump said he was banning travel to and from Europe for 30 days.

“This is the most aggressive and comprehensive effort to confront a foreign virus in modern history,” Trump said. “I am confident that by counting and continuing to take these tough measures, we will significantly reduce the threat to our citizens, and we will ultimately and expeditiously defeat this virus.”

More than 1 million students are now at home. Some but not all of them are learning from home, Pasadena City College will soon be among them.

The Pasadena Unified School District will vote on a resolution Thursday night that would allow Superintendent Brian McDonald to take action during the crisis, including reassigning personnel from one site to another, signing contract for an outside cleaning company specializing in sanitizing possible biohazards, to closing a school under the advice of county health officials without calling emergency meetings of the board.

The school board will monitor his decision.

At that meeting, the public has been asked to submit public comment in writing to the district, rather than in person. Comment will be included in the written record of the meeting.

Groups are asked to submit comments through one person during public comment, and the group support that person by signing a statement, rather than coming to the board room in a crowd.’’

The public was also asked to “engage in social distancing in the Boardroom, in the hallways, or in the overflow room,” and to “give sufficient space to other members of the public whenever possible.’’

The district moved to Scenario II in the state’s guidelines which calls for the cancellation of events, including graduations.

Atheltic events are being monitored.

All schools in the Pasadena Unified School District are in session.

Pasadena City College will move some classes to online during spring break.

Meanwhile classes at the ArtCenter have been suspended until March. Caltech will resume classes on March 30.

On Thursday morning, Mayor Terry Tornek said he was monitoring the situation from abroad.

“Delegation is safely in Dakar. Monitoring events in Pasadena closely,” the message said.

Tornek left on Tuesday for Pasadena’s sister city for African sister city. He will be there until March 19.

This is a breaking story and Pasadena Now will provide updates as they become available.

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